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You can help
By making small changes to the manner in which your department conducts its ordering you can:
- Stimulate market demand for greener products
- Help the university meet its environmental goals
- Improve worker safety and health
- Reduce health and disposal costs
- Reduce university liabilities
All while improving the environment we share.
Consolidate orders to once per week: By reducing the number of deliveries made to your office, you are reducing fuel use, carbon emissions, and traffic congestion.
Set a minimum order value of $50: By increasing the size of individual orders you reduce deliveries and limit packaging waste. Vendors have a limited number of sizes available for shipping cartons. Whether that box contains a single pen surrounded by foam packaging or is filled with packages of pens, some note pads and a pack of Post-Its is up to you.
Switch to on-line ordering: Eliminate the need for paper purchase orders, save time, energy, and money.
Make use of electronic or CD-ROM catalogs: Saves paper, eliminates the need to dispose of bulky catalogs every year, and frees up valuable desk space for important things like pictures of the kids or a nice CO2 absorbing office plant.
Buy items which contain recycled material: We are all aware that there is recycled paper available, but did you know that there are binders, pens, pencils, and notebooks that contain recycled material? There is also flooring and construction material, office furniture, and playground equipment that employ recycled material. There is even one company that uses recycled chopsticks to create pencil holders and fruit dishes.
Choose renewable reBuy EPEAT Rated Computer Equipment:Use the EPEAT system to help evaluate, compare and select electronic products based on their environmental attributes. Visit the EPEAT web site to find registered products by manufacturer. Calculate the environmental benefits of purchasing EPEAT-rated computers sources: Lessen the demand for limited natural resources by making the renewable choice. Request vegetable based inks be used when printing your next brochure, or consider building materials obtained from sustainably harvested forests.
Opt for the non-hazardous alternative: By purchasing alcohol thermometers as opposed to ones filled with mercury you can lessen disposal costs while removing the potential for a hazardous chemical spill. Likewise the purchase and use of non-toxic cleaning supplies, like those with the Green Seal certification, can improve worker safety by reducing exposure to noxious chemicals.
Look for the most energy efficient model: The US EPA Energy Star program rates and certifies hundreds of energy efficient products. By choosing Energy Star, you are helping prevent global warming and promote cleaner air without sacrificing the product quality and performance you expect.
Buy locally: It takes fuel to transport goods. Proximity to production not only reduces the energy use required to bring the item to market, it also helps to support the local economy.
Buy only what you need: While it may appear economical to purchase in quantity, the truth is that often the cost to dispose of unused supplies, especially chemicals, far exceeds the original price of purchase.
Spread the word: Once you see how simple it is to "Buy Green" make sure that everyone else knows too! Show the office next door how the 50% post consumer recycled paper you are now using works just as well as the virgin forest paper they use.